TopOCR's Multilingual Accessible User Interface
With just a single mouse click, TopOCR can be transformed into a PC-based "Reading Machine" that can assist anyone who has difficulty reading print.
It has a very easy to learn Accessible User Interface and a very fast state-of-the-art OCR (Optical Character Reading) system that transforms text images into speech that can be played on a headset or saved on an MP3 player.
TopOCR can read and speak in eleven different languages (English, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Italian, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish).
You can visit our Voices page and download any of the free Text To Speech voices for use with TopOCR's Text To Speech system.
Once you've installed your Text To Speech Voice, TopOCR will automatically select it based on the OCR language setting Settings->Language.
You can easily switch between TopOCR's Graphical User Interface and the Accessible User Interface by simply toggling the Settings->Reading Machine Mode menu item.
TopOCR's "Reading Machine Mode" works by transforming a standard PC keyboard into a touch panel interface that controls a virtual Reading Machine. All commands can be accessed through a simple keyboard interface with conveniently located keys. TopOCR works with inexpensive document cameras that can be purchased online from Amazon, so it doesn't require expensive proprietary hardware that can be difficult for you to locate, evaluate and purchase.
Accessibility Keys and their Functions
Esc - Scan an image, OCR the image, and read the OCR Output
F1 - Pause/Resume reading
F2 - Replay the OCR Text output from the beginning
F3 - Save the OCR text output as MP3 audio and copy it to an MP3 Player
F4 - Exit TopOCR
Setup for the Accessibility Interface
Please follow these steps to get correct operation of your document camera with TopOCR's Accessible User Interface.
This setup only needs to be done once.
1. Plug-in your Document Camera into a USB port on your PC.
2. Launch the TopOCR application.
3. Toggle the Settings->Reading Machine Mode.
4. TopOCR's default language is English, if you want to use the Accessibility Interface with another language, then use the Settings->Language to change it.
5. If you have a PC with more than one webcam/document camera, use the WebCam Settings->Select a Camera to select the correct camera.
Using the Accessibility Interface
TopOCR's Accessible User Interface allows you to interactively read documents using just two keys, "Esc"(Scan, OCR and Read) and "F1"(Pause/Resume Reading).
If you want to make an MP3 audio backup of your scanned images, just plug in your MP3 player, press the "F3" key, and then wait for the audio prompts to tell you the process is complete.
All of the Accessibility Keys provide audio feedback when pressed as well as any necessary feedback regarding their operation in the selected Language.
Low Vision Interface
TopOCR has a hotkey to magnify the currently displayed image.
Just press the "+" key on the far right side of the keyboard.
This works best when magnifying images that originated from the WebCam/Document Camera interface.
This feature lets you combine TopOCR with a webcam or document camera together with an HDMI cable and connect it to a wide-screen TV.
This will give you the same fuctionality as a big screen "video magnifier" sold by Accessible Products companies for $2,000-$4,000.
We recommend creating a keyboard shortcut to launch TopOCR.
You can create the TopOCR keyboard shortcut by using the following procedure:
Right-click on the DeskTop TopOCR shortcut, and then click Properties
In the Shortcut Properties dialog box, click the Shortcut tab
Click in the Shortcut key box, press the key on your keyboard that you want to use in combination with Ctrl+Alt, and then click OK.
After this step has been performed, clicking the Ctrl+Alt and your custom key combination will launch TopOCR.
You make TopOCR start automatically each time you turn on your computer. Simply use a mouse right mouse-click on TopOCR's DeskTop icon, and then select the "Pin to Start Menu".
Once you make an image capture mat, aligning the camera to the document is pretty simple. You can make an image capture mat out of a piece of white paper or cardboard with the dimension of 16x16 inches. Position the document camera at the top end of the capture mat. Place an 8.5x11 or A4 piece of paper under the document camera and adjust the position of the paper until it is centered in the camera's view. Now place vinyl tape around the camera and document outline, in the future you will be to align the webcam to the document capture area by touch.
You can improve OCR accuracy by adjusting the background removal slider in the WebCam Settings->Image Options menu.